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Windermere, Cumbria (town)

Coordinates: 54°22′34″N 2°54′25″W / 54.376°N 2.907°W / 54.376; -2.907
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Windermere town centre
Windermere is located in the former South Lakeland district
Location in the former South Lakeland district
Windermere is located in Cumbria
Location within Cumbria
Population4,826 (2021)
OS grid referenceSD4198
Civil parish
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtLA23
Dialling code01539
AmbulanceNorth West
UK Parliament
List of places
54°22′34″N 2°54′25″W / 54.376°N 2.907°W / 54.376; -2.907

Windermere (/ˈwɪndərmɪər/) is a town in the civil parish of Windermere and Bowness, in the Westmorland and Furness district in the ceremonial county of Cumbria, England; it is within the Lake District National Park. The town lies about half a mile (1 km) east of the lake, Windermere, from which it takes its name.[2] In 2021 it had a population of 4826.[3]

While Windermere town does not itself touch the lake, it forms one urban area with the older town of Bowness-on-Windermere, which is directly on the lake shore. Windermere began to grow when the railway station and hotel of the same name opened in 1847. Tourism is popular in the town, owing to its proximity to the lake and local scenery. Boats from the piers in Bowness sail around the lake, many calling at Ambleside or at Lakeside where there is a restored railway.


Historically a part of the county of Westmorland, Windermere town was known as Birthwaite prior to the arrival of the Kendal and Windermere Railway, which stimulated its development. Windermere station offers train and bus connections to the surrounding area, Manchester Airport and the West Coast Main Line.

The geological formations around the area take their name from the town. They are called the Windermere Group of sedimentary rocks.


The word "Windermere" is thought to translate as "Winand or Vinand's lake". The specific has usually been identified with an Old Swedish personal name Vinandr. The other possibility is for a Continental Germanic name Wīnand.[4] The second element is Old English 'mere', meaning 'lake' or 'pool'. There is a reference to "Wynandermer" in 1396.[5]


Windermere was from 1894 to 1974 governed by an urban district council which in 1905 absorbed the former Bowness-on-Windermere UDC although Bowness remained a separate civil parish until 1974. Windermere UDC had slight boundary changes in 1934 and was abolished by the Local Government Act 1972 replacing it with South Lakeland District Council. On 29 July 2020 the merged parish was renamed from "Windermere" to "Windermere and Bowness".[6] In 2023 South Lakeland was abolished and merged into Westmorland and Furness unitary authority area.


Windermere station in 2008. The Booths supermarket in the background has been designed to mimic the former trainshed and also incorporates the frontage of the original station

Windermere railway station was built in 1847 and was the reason the town was established.[7] The station serves trains run by Northern to Oxenholme on the West Coast Main Line; some services continue on to Manchester Airport.[8]

Stagecoach Cumbria operates bus routes to Keswick, Kendal, Lancaster, Grasmere, Ambleside, Bowness-on-Windermere, Penrith and Coniston.[9]

The town is near the A591 road, a major road which runs through the Lake District from Kendal to Keswick.

Local media[edit]

Regional TV news is provided by BBC North West and ITV Border. Television signals are received from the local relay transmitter. [10]

Local radio stations are BBC Radio Cumbria 104.2 FM, Heart North West on 102.3 FM, Smooth Lake District on 100.8 FM, and Lake District Radio that broadcast online from its studios in Kendal. [11]

The town's local newspapers are The Westmorland Gazette and North West Evening Mail. [12]


There are three primary schools located in the town. Secondary education is provided by The Lakes School (state) and Windermere School (independent, ages 2–18), both of which are located on the outskirts.

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Windermere and Bowness Town Council Website". Windermere and Bowness Town Council. Retrieved 11 July 2021.
  2. ^ "Pictures of Windermere". Picturesofengland.com. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  3. ^ "Windermere". City Population De. Retrieved 17 November 2023.
  4. ^ Whaley, Diana (2006). A dictionary of Lake District place-names. Nottingham: English Place-Name Society. pp. lx, 423 p.374. ISBN 0904889726.
  5. ^ Plea Rolls of the Court of Common Pleas: CP 40/541; http://aalt.law.uh.edu/AALT6/R2/CP40no541a/aCP40no541afronts/IMG_0077.htm; 4th entry; animals being taken from John Burgh by 2 guys from Wynandermer
  6. ^ "Notice of change of name of parish". South Lakeland District Council. Retrieved 17 November 2023.
  7. ^ Reid, Jim (2011). Tour of the Lake District. Cicerone Press Limited. p. 66. ISBN 978-1-849-65465-4.
  8. ^ "Timetables and engineering information for travel with Northern". Northern Railway. May 2023. Retrieved 17 September 2023.
  9. ^ "Windermere Bus Services". Bus Times. 2023. Retrieved 17 September 2023.
  10. ^ "Windermere (Cumbria, England) Freeview Light transmitter". May 2004.
  11. ^ https://lakedistrictradio.org/
  12. ^ "Local Newspapers for Cumbria and the Lake District".
  13. ^ "Our Weekly Gossip". The Athenaeum. No. 1719. 6 October 1860. p. 453.
  14. ^ Nicholson, Savannah. "Windermere Filmmaker on new war film" The Westmorland Gazette. 25 May 2021
  15. ^ "Award-winning film shot by Cumbrian man" CumbriaCrack. 5 April 2022

External links[edit]